A Very Real Reason Your Facebook Ads Don’t Work

Over the past few months, a lot of people have come to me with questions about whether they should hit Boost Post on their Facebook posts. 

The answer is always no, as I shared earlier this year. You really should never do this.

But I understand why a lot of people ask about this. They’ve vaguely heard that Facebook won’t surface business-related posts unless your paying; they see Facebook’s prompt that tells them they can start with a budget of $5, and they know they need to get in front of potential customers’ faces. This seems like a low-cost way to do it.

But like a lot of low-cost/no-cost solutions, it doesn’t make you any money. And in this case, it’s because it doesn’t fit into a larger strategy.

But when I tell this to clients, it feels daunting. Where do you start when you’re trying to do come up with this strategy? 

Taki Moore lays this out very clearly.  He’s written this guide for coaches, but a lot of the advice applies to anyone who sells anything directly. 

Before you ever run your Facebook ad, you need to determine how many steps you need to make the sale. Then you can use your ad to get your prospects to take that next step with you.
— Taki Moore

If you try to “sell in one step,” the very first time someone interfaces with you or your business in any way, you’re “forced to sell too hard in your ad, which results in almost no clicks or sales.” 

To prove just how many businesses need to hear this advice, I’ll tell you a story: I just had this conversation with a woman yesterday. She runs a environmental non-profit. We were talking about #GivingTuesday, an initiative the 92Y came up with to encourage the public to make charitable donations the day after “Cyber Monday.” 

I told this woman that one of the big reasons that most non-profits fail to drum up a hefty amount of donations on #GivingTuesday is because they are trying to sell in one step. They haven’t set up a strategy to warm up their recurring or past donors.

They are essentially standing up in a crowded room, shouting, “I need money for my very good cause!”

How effective do you think that’s gonna be? How much more effective might it be to first:

  1. Identify a group of people who are moved by that cause.
  2. Get those people together in a room.
  3. Stand up in front of them and tell them the story of your organization and how it helps alleviate this very serious problem that is very, very important to every member of the audience.
  4. Tell them how their money can help in very specific terms.
  5. Ask them to donate.

That’s a strategy. That’s a plan. And that is something, through the miracle of the internet, you can actually do! If you replace the worked “room” with, say, e-mail list segment or Facebook ad custom audience, and replace “stand up in front of them” with “email them” or “buy an ad targeted at them,” you can do this very effectively. 

What do you think? Any of my readers making #GivingTuesday plans? 




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